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Delinquent Flat Rate Account Options

Dear Valued Constituent:

As long as you have water-righted acreage, you are legally responsible for paying the annual EBID assessments. If you fail to pay assessments, you are not entitled to use water. However, if you do not use water, or if there is no water available, you are still liable for the assessment every year. This is because your assessment is not a payment for water, but instead it is payment for operation and maintenance of the physical water delivery system. EBID offers several options with regard to payment or non-payment of assessments:

1. Pay the balance due in full. If you wish to retain the water rights on your property, you must pay the full amount of the cumulative assessments, plus interest. Once paid, you will be entitled to irrigate your property with EBID water. Until the assessments are paid, you cannot use EBID water.

2.  Failure to pay the balance due for three years may result in forfeiture. If you do not wish to retain the water rights on your property, then your water rights are subject to forfeiture. After three years of non-payment, according to New Mexico law, you will forfeit the water rights appurtenant to your property. EBID will conduct a public hearing during which the water rights appurtenant to your property will be terminated. This process releases you of the debt created by unpaid tax assessments and terminates the right to irrigate with EBID water on your property. Under this option you would no longer be liable for the EBID annual assessment; however, you will continue to be responsible for payment of Local Improvement District (LID) tax assessments (if applicable), which relate to flood protection.

3. Voluntary Suspension of the water rights on your property. The District does allow, under certain circumstances, the voluntary suspension of water rights on your land and their transfer to other lands within District boundaries. This is a simple process, requiring your signature on the EBID Voluntary Suspension Form agreeing to the suspension of water rights on your property. This process releases you of the debt created by unpaid assessments and terminates the water rights on your property. Following the approval of a suspension and transfer by the EBID Board of Directors, you would no longer be liable for the EBID assessment on your property and the water rights appurtenant to your property will be terminated. (You will continue to be responsible for payment of Local Improvement District (LID) tax assessments, if applicable, which relate to flood protection).

Note: Elephant Butte Irrigation District urges you to consider the importance of keeping the surface water rights secure while the Lower Rio Grande stream adjudication case is ongoing. Failure to pay the annual assessments can certainly weaken your ability to prove up the surface water rights attached to your property.

By paying the balance of assessments in full, or suspending the water rights, you will save the interest accruing on your account. Full payment will maintain the water rights. Please contact EBID at 526-6671 as soon as possible to make arrangements for payment of your account or voluntary suspension of your water rights.

 
 
 
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